The Immigration and Customs Enforcement office (ICE) purchased a database under a $ 16.8 million contract with LexisNexis.
The Intercept report comes two years after that company denied working with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in data collection, including information on driver’s licenses that, in states like New York, can affect undocumented immigrants.
The information in the report was obtained based on a contract provided by the civil organization Mijente alerting new strategy for deportations.
“The contract shows that LexisNexis will provide Homeland Security investigators access to billions of different records containing aggregated personal data from a wide range of public and private sources.”, says the report. “They include credit history, bankruptcy records, license plate images, and cell phone subscriber information.”
The company will also provide analytical tools that can help police find the person they are looking for in these large data warehouses.
It is added that the information even comes from states or cities considered sanctuary, which seek to protect undocumented immigrants. The reason is that the databases were “privatized” and the sanctuary rules apply mainly to governments.
“(An undocumented person) may be in a city where your local politician is trying to tell you, ‘Don’t worry, you’re welcome here,’ but then ICE can get your address from a data provider and go directly to your home and try to deport you, “he explained Jacinta González, Mijente’s field director. “Your state may be willing to grant you a driver’s license, but that information could get into the hands of a data collector.”.
The measure has provoked criticism, despite the fact that the transaction of February 25 already with the president’s administration Joe biden, but it is unknown if that strategy will continue.
LexisNex is a company best known for its role as a powerful academic and legal research tool, but the company also caters to the lucrative “risk” industry by providing, it says, data from different sectors.
“The LexisNexis ICE agreement appears to be replacing CLEAR, a risk industry service operated by Thomson Reuters that has been crucial to deportation efforts,” the portal report added.